The Word

One Word
One Word

Sometimes its good to look back for just a few moments before we move forward.

Reflection is healthy. It is sitting behind a glass window, watching our life’s highlights and expressing emotions to release the memory. Letting it go.

The confident “I did real good” smile; the eye rolling “oh brother, what was I thinking”. Perhaps you had the popular “ok, ok, I get it now, I really do” palms in the air exasperation, or how about the head in the hands “goodness, where is the fast forward button”.

Expressing is good. In our house when someone starts to get sick, we say they are “expressing health” because believe it or not, when our bodies shoot out symptoms it means we are alive and well and our bodies are simply communicating with us. We understand that a fever is good, its nature’s way of burning off virus and bacteria, so in our house we don’t immediately suppress the fever, we let it run its course. We know the heat expressed in a fever holds great purpose.

Looking back at my one word for 2013 I realized how truly amazing this year was. My word was nurture. I posted it on the chalkboard on my kitchen cupboard and left it there in full view all year. I received my word. I welcomed the opportunity to shut out the world for a while and focus solely on those immediate things I am responsible for.

Things that had never really been a top priority for me were now going to  get all of me, for the entire year.

Not only did my one word keep me focused on the pulse of my heart, it also gave me clarity on the disciplines necessary for sustaining it. Nurture drew in practices like: comfort, feed, clothe, listen, water, sunlight and fertilize. Yes, fertilize. If you are a good gardener and your plants flourish it is because your soil is nurtured with manure.

My  heart became the soil that was nurtured this year:

  • I learned how to fertilize: embracing grace for effectively facing and confronting conflict and turning it into something good.
  • I learned how to prune: letting go of things that served no purpose or bore no fruit.
  • I learned how to feed: engaging in meaningful relationships and being vulnerable enough to give healthy relationships room to mature.
  • I learned how to water: daily and consistent soaking in the only living water.
  • I learned how to bask in the essential light of the Son.

It has been a good year. Good does not mean it was painless, fancy free and footloose. Good means it was beneficial, cleansing and refining.

A pretty container does not usher in maturity – it is the quality of her soil and robustness of her roots, that enable her to… grow.

Grow. My word for 2014.  It seems fitting and natural, gentle and simple. I was hoping for a word that was beautifully poetic and rhythmically expressive. I immediately went to the thesaurus, searching for a similar word that would identify more with my bohemian nature. Other words felt forced and fake. I sat with it for a few hours; opened up my new day planner to the month of January.

Ah, a fresh clean page with only a few delicately jotted appointments. The ones that were placed there with slow, intentional handwritings with a choice ballpoint pen. A month on paper that has yet to be tainted by little scribbles, crayons and dried out sharpies. And there it was, the quote for the month.

“If we’re growing, we’re always going to be out of our comfort zone.”  – John Maxwell

This simple word has already expanded my world to consider a continual journey outside of what I know. It’s adventure. It’s risk. It’s thrilling. It’s outrageous.

Its mine.

There is a word that is waiting for you to discover. A word that will lead you and guide you forward and deeper. Ask for your word. Listen for your word. And watch its beauty unfold before you, like a secret whisper, or a breath of hope.

Happy New Year.



p.s. ~ {Do you come alive when you write? Is it time for you to nurture your gifts and talents, growing in your calling with strength, courage and purpose? Join the sisterhood of Story Sessions and  discover the red tent of  all things writerly.}


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Communications major. Journalist. Willing: to have the tough conversations. Living out the belief that communication strengthens connection.

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